Facebook, YouTube are sucking enterprise bandwidth

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A study of web traffic from enterprises in the first quarter of this year has shown that YouTube videos used 10 percent of bandwidth – more than any other site. Facebook traffic used 4.5 percent, Windows update 3.3, Yahoo!’s image server Yimg 2.7 and Google searches 2.5 percent.

The study, by the Hong Kong-based security firm Network Box, analyzed traffic to and from 13 billion URLs.

The study also analyzed the number of hits:

  • 6.8 to Facebook
  • 3.4 to Google
  • 2.8 percent to Yimg
  • 2.4 percent to Yahoo
  • 1.7 percent to DoubleClick

Simon Heron, a Network Box internet security analyst said: “The figures show that IT managers are right to be concerned about the amount of social network use at work. There are two real concerns here: firstly that employees will be downloading applications from social networks and putting security at risk; and secondly the amount of corporate bandwidth that appears to be being used for non-corporate activity.”

Network Box release here: “Business internet traffic increases to Facebook and YouTube”
The assumption here is that all this traffic is personal browsing and not work-related. That actually might be a more complicated issue than a first glance indicates. Certainly people use Google for work. I look things up a dozen times a day.

Twelve of my 26 Facebook friends are professional contacts. Keeping up with such professional contacts for possible recruiting is certainly a business function.

Yahoo is my backup email on those rare occasions that there are problems with the company email server. There are also business reasons to use an email account that is not linked to your company (at least in research activities in the AV industry it’s pretty common.)

YouTube? There are news- and business-related videos there too in addition to the Roomba-riding cats and “Sunbelt Software Research goes Bowling.”

No, seriously, there are legitimate business reasons for using social media. Really! Have you seen the “Standing Cat is Watching you” YouTube video?

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